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warning to syria's president bashar al-assad to cease the airstrikes and fighting against syrian rebels that have bled into turkish territory. we can't spend a lot of time worrying about whether -- secretary panetta said afterwards. yet an interview with esquire, he said if he invited kim jong-un over for dinner he would serve him a glass of wine and try to understand how the guy things. clearly the piano playing dog loving secretary of defense is a complex man. his list of accomplishments over 74 years spans two branches of government, education and even a little bit of foreign labor on his california ranch. before taking office as the 23rd secretary of defense on july 4, 2011, secretary panetta served more than two years as cia director. after three years as chief of staff to president clinton, secretary panetta and his wife sylvia codirected the leon and sylvia panetta institute for public poli-sci california state university at monterey bay, nonpartisan senator -- center to promote public service. he served eight terms in congress, rising in 1989 to chairman of the house budget co
questions. all parties should recognize the need for unity in the coming year when events in iran, syria, afghanistan, north korea, and other locations may test american national security in extreme ways. i commend each of you, my senate colleagues, for the commitment that led you to stand for election in the united states senate to begin with. running for office is a difficult endeavor that is usually accompanied by great personal risk and cost. each one of you is capable of being a positive force for changing the tone of debate in our country. each one of you has a responsibility not only to act with integrity and represent your constituents but also to make informed and imaginative choice on which good governance for our country depends. i am optimistic about our country's future. i believe that both internal divisions and external threats can be overcome. the united states will continue to serve as the inspiration for people seeking peace, freedom, and economic prosperity. and the united states senate should and will be at the forefront of this advancement. may we seek each day from
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